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New report highlights substantial benefits of cogeneration to European economy


28 Nov 2012


Trade & Society
Sustainable Dev.


28 November 2012

As Europe places increased importance on industry in its economic recovery strategy, Germany highlights a major role for CHP in a modern low carbon industrial base

A new policy report endorsed by the German Ministry of Environment confirms that opportunities and possibilities offered by a massive backing of energy efficiency measures are much greater than expected. It finds that EU 2050 climate targets could be achieved through additional application of cogeneration to provide heat and power across the industrial base.

The report1 ”Contribution of Energy Efficiency Measures to Climate protection within the European Union to 2050” published on 19 November 2012 was commissioned by the German Ministry of Environment from the Fraunhofer Institute for Systems and Innovation Research ISI. It assesses the potential role of energy efficiency among options which will ensure that a shift to a sustainable European energy system still complies with the constraints imposed by competitiveness and security of supply.

In 2050 Europe’s overall final energy demand could be reduced by 57 percent compared to the baseline with annual savings of 500 bn euros. The saving potential in industrial heat generation is primarily due to a further diffusion of CHP technology replacing units of separate heat and electricity generation as well as to efficiency improvements of separate and combined heat generation technologies and considerable efficiency improvements in space heating technologies. By 2030 and in the industrial sector alone, at least 9 Mtoe of savings result from CHP diffusion and 10 Mtoe from efficiency improvements in boiler and CHP technology. The total technical saving potential mounts up to 44 Mtoe by 2030 and to 95 Mtoe by 2050 compared to the baseline.

This new study came just months after the adoption in Germany of the third CHP Law setting an aggressive 25% objective by 2020, up from 14.5% in 2010, of electricity produced by cogeneration plants. The law features a series of policy instruments to more effectively tap into the national potential for cogeneration and supports both large industrial CHP plants and smaller and more flexible CHP units.

Dr Fiona Riddoch Managing, Director of COGEN Europe, said ”COGEN Europe welcomes the report which rightly highlights the important role of cogeneration in both energy savings and the decarbonisation of industry”.


For more information please contact:

Dr Fiona Riddoch, Managing Director

Tel: +32 2 772 8290 Fax: + 32 2 772 5044 Email:

Stefan Craenen, Communications Manager Tel: +32 2 772 8290

Fax: + 32 2 772 5044


About cogeneration:

Cogeneration (also known as CHP or Combined Heat and Power) is the simultaneous production of heat and electricity. 11% of Europe’s electricity and associated heat requirements today are produced using this proven energy efficiency principle. The estimated growth potential for cogeneration is a further 110-120 GWe which will lead to an improved environment and greater economic competitiveness in Europe. Cogeneration units can be found in different sizes and applications: industry, households and tertiary sector and spans applications with capacities ranging from below 1kw to hundreds of Megawatts. It is a highly efficient energy solution that delivers energy savings and substantial reductions in CO2 emissions. When seriously supported, as in Denmark, CHP has the potential to increase the energy production and transformation system overall efficiency from a bare 33% (EU average) up to 65%. Realising the potential of cogeneration in Europe will contribute significantly to reaching the strategic climate and energy goals, such as security of supply, energy efficiency and reduction of emissions.

About COGEN Europe:

COGEN Europe is the European association for the promotion of cogeneration. We represent 70 organisations which are National COGEN Associations, manufacturers, users, utilities and service companies. Currently around 100,000 Europeans are employed in the cogeneration sector. More info on


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